Study: U.S. food insecurity increasing

December 20, 2005

At least 38 million U.S. citizens can't count on having enough food throughout the year -- and Tufts University scientists say the number is increasing.

The Economic Research Service of the Department of Agriculture announced in October that household food insecurity increased last year 2004.

Assistant Professor Parke Wilde of the university's Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy said, "This increase represents the largest one-year jump since data collection began in 1995." Wilde, a food economist, tracks household food insecurity, food stamps, and related measures of hunger.

The percentage of U.S. households classified as food insecure rose from 11.2 percent in 2003 to 11.9 percent in 2004. While that one-year increase might not seem like a lot, it represents the fifth consecutive year of worsening food insecurity.

Wilde and co-author Mark Nord of the USDA presented their study in the Review of Agricultural Economics.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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